First impressions mean a lot, and a split second can make or break that first meeting. Something that often tips the scale in your favor is a beautiful, confident smile. It is one of your most powerful features and is often the first thing a person will notice about you. Unfortunately, having a mouthful of stained, chipped or poorly aligned teeth has many people hiding their most influential asset. Don’t keep missing out on opportunities to shine. Here are eight amazing treatments a cosmetic dentist can provide to enhance and perfect your smile.

Why You Need Cosmetic Dentistry
Many patients seem to think that cosmetic dentistry is all about looks, and nothing else. The truth is few procedures provided by a cosmetic dentist are simply esthetic. Most of the treatments are restorative, designed to both enhance and maintain your smile. Even tooth-colored fillings should be considered cosmetic dental treatments, at least in part, they are the perfect combination of art and science, beauty and function. There are a variety of procedures you can choose from, and when you work with a cosmetic dentist your dream smile is within reach. Here are some of procedures you might consider.

1. Whiter and Brighter Teeth
As your teeth age, they dull with use and staining. Certain medications, highly pigmented foods and smoking can all take the luster right out of the enamel. A cosmetic dentist can provide a safe, efficient treatment for most extrinsic stains. All it takes is a 45-minute appointment in the dentist chair. Teeth whitening involves a light-accelerated peroxide gel. With just one appointment the dentist can lighten your teeth by eight to ten shades.

2. No More Metal Fillings
Do you have any silver, gold or metal alloy (amalgam) fillings? Do they look pretty enough? Now cosmetic dentists provide a much more esthetic option. Tooth-colored bonding was especially designed to treat cavities in front teeth where amalgam fillings would be unsightly. The bonding material is a tooth-colored resin made up of durable plastic. The dentist applies and molds the material directly to the enamel, then he or she hardens it with a special light, “bonding” the material in place.

3. Tooth Reshaping and Contouring
If you have minor imperfections like a slight overlap or bite problem, then the cosmetic dentist might use contouring and reshaping to enhance your smile. The dentist will use a set of abrasive tools to change the shape, length or surface of one or more teeth. The process is often combined with dental bonding to get the most uniform results possible. These inexpensive procedures make only the slightest changes in your smile, but results can go a long way.

4. Veneers
Dentists use these wafer-thin shells to cover misshapen or severely stained enamel. They are made of a composite resin or ceramic material and the dentist bonds them directly to the surface of the enamel. This solution can last for many years if properly maintained.

5. Inlays and Onlays
This is the treatment midway between a dental filling and a dental crown. It requires a two-part procedure: 1) The dentist cleans away decay, preps the tooth and creates a mold he or she will send to a dental laboratory; and, 2) When the restoration is complete you return to the dentist and he or she cements it in place. This cosmetic restoration is becoming more and more popular. The cosmetic dentist is able to preserve more of your natural tooth structure instead of shaving down the tooth for a full crown.

6. Caps or Crowns
Technically, a dental crown is an onlay for the entire upper part of the tooth. This procedure is often used in tandem with a root canal or to restore a weak, fractured or severely misshapen tooth. Crowns are also used in connection with other restorative procedures like bridges and dental implants. Because these restorations are custom built, they will seamlessly blend with the rest of your natural teeth.

7. Bridge the Gap
A dental bridge is the union of two abutment crowns with a prosthetic tooth (pontic) anchored between. Dentists use this common appliance to restore a missing tooth surrounded by neighboring healthy teeth. Though relatively successful and long-lasting, this treatment does require the dentist to cut down the structure of otherwise healthy teeth. This is something even cosmetic dentists do not like to perform without proper cause. If you choose the right cosmetic dentist, your overall wellness will be top priority.

8. Fill the Gap
While dental bridges bridge the gap, dental implants fill the gap — and more naturally too. This procedure involves the surgical placement of a titanium screw or post -- the dental implant. The material is biocompatible and will fuse directly to the existing jawbone. If properly placed and maintained, a dental implant can last a lifetime. The other parts of this dental restoration include the abutment (above the gum) and the dental crown to restore the tooth. These restorations stimulate the jawbone and prevent deterioration and further tooth loss.

With dentist in mclean va you can do more than just improve the look of your smile. You can restore and preserve your grin for a lifetime.

Author's Bio: 

I'm just your average hygienist with a passion for excellence. I do what I do best, which is to help my patients achieve healthy smiles and provide & educate them with oral health care solutions and lifelong cosmetic procedures.